Nevin Yanit, one of Europe's biggest female track stars, has been banned from competing for two years by the Turkish Athletics Federation on doping charges.
The two-time 100-meter hurdle champion's fall from grace is a huge blow to the Turkish national team, which lost 31 athletes this month, including Olympic medalist Esref Apak, who also tested positive for banned substances, according to the Hurriyet Daily News.
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The 31 athletes are banned from competing for two years and will be allowed to qualify for and compete in the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Brazil.
"The IAAF (International Association of Athletics Federation) had informed us that Nevin Yanıt’s sample taken at the PSD Bank event in Dusseldorf on Feb. 8 tested positive for a banned substance," the federation said today in a statement. "After her B sample also tested positive, the disciplinary board asked for Yanıt’s defense and decided to ban the athlete for two years following deliberations."
The doping scandals have already cost Turkish Athletics Federation chair Mehmet Terzi his job, who stepped down after the first wave of suspensions.
Yanit won the 100-meter hurdles in the European championships in 2010 and 2012 and placed fifth at the London Olympics but did not compete at the recent World Championships this year.
The IAAF and the Turkish Athletics Federation announced in July that they would be taking a closer look at Turkish athletes.
"The IAAF is aware of media speculation surrounding the recent anti-doping control tests, in and out of competition, of a number of Turkish athletes," the IAAF said in a statement, according to the Daily Mail.
"Following concerns highlighted by abnormal biological passport values the IAAF with the national anti-doping agency intensified the testing program in Turkey, the results of which remain ongoing in accordance with IAAF Rules."
Banned substances have rocked the U.S. team as well this summer, as the country's best sprinter and top challenger to Jamaica's Usain Bolt in the 100-meter run, Tyson Gay, was banned after testing positive for steroids.
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